Rissveds hits back for emotional win as Van der Poel triumphs again

Olympic XCO champion Jenny Rissveds secured an emotional UCI Mountain Bike World Cup victory in Lenzerheide after her return from depression as Dutchman Mathieu van der Poel scored his third men's win of the 2019 season.

Jenny Rissveds podium.jpg
Jenny Rissveds

 

Rissveds crashed early on as Swiss hope Jolanda Neff and Anne Terpstra of the Netherlands swapped the lead before France's Pauline Ferrand-Prevot upped the ante.

 

Neff dropped back as the pace quickened with Swede Rissveds coming back superbly to challenge the stubborn Terpstra for the lead on the last lap.

 

Pauline Ferrand Prevot and Jenny Rissveds.jpg
Pauline Ferrand Prevot and Jenny Rissveds

 

The 25-year-old held her nerve brilliantly after her recent battle with depression to triumph from Terpstra and Ferrand-Prevot as a late puncture for Neff saw title rival Kate Courtney overtake her for seventh and crucial points ahead of their 2019 finale in Snowshoe.

 

Anne Terpstra.jpgAnne Terpstra
Jenny Rissveds.jpgJenny Rissveds

 

Rissveds said: "So much emotion. Two years ago, I didn't want to be alive. It is possible and never give up like Pauline said last week. I was nervous before the start as I had to start on the front row and that is why I crashed in the first lap. The circle is complete. Three years ago I won this World Cup race and I won today."

 

In the men's race, Van der Poel started off strong after another short-track win on Friday with local hero Nino Schurter and Brazilian Henrique Avancini close behind.

 

Nino Schurter and Mathieu van der Poel.jpg
Nino Schurter and Mathieu van der Poel

 

Home hope Schurter was soon joined by another Swiss favourite in Mathias Flueckiger, however they could not shake off Van der Poel who put the hammer down in the closing laps with a searing pace that Schurter could not the match as the Dutchman won by 25 seconds.

 

It was his third win of 2019 and denied Schurter a record-equalling 33rd World Cup win, however the Swiss rider looks certain to win a seventh World Cup title as Van der Poel has opted not to race at the final USA stop to focus on the road cycling World Championship.

 

Mathieu van der Poel.jpg
Mathieu van der Poel

 

Van der Poel, 24, said: "This is maybe one of the most difficult ones to win especially because Nino is super motivated to win here in front of his home crowd. I knew it was going to be a tough one and I am very happy to make it work. I will stick to my main plan. I am very happy with my (mountain bike) season."

 

Schurter, 33, added: "He was definitely stronger and it is no shame to get second. I think my only chance to beat him was to go hard from the beginning. It is not nice if someone is missing in a tight battle, but I am also looking forward to winning another overall."

 

Mathias Flueckiger.jpg
Mathias Flueckiger

 




3 Comments

ians, Aug 12 2019 10:33

Jenny is a class act, she is so composed while racing. So happy that she is back. 

TheJ, Aug 12 2019 11:26

So happy for Jenny. She's been through terrible lows the last few years, and to reach the top again is absolutely incredible.

DieselnDust, Aug 12 2019 11:38

Jenny, and  Pauline, super motivators. Both coming back from what could have been career ending medical conditions. Chapeau ladies! you ROCK!